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A Brief Guide to the Mayor’s Proposed Budget

Here's a look at some of the proposals Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake released on Wednesday.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake discussed her proposed budget with members of the media on Wednesday.  Patch will be looking at the budget more in depth to help readers understand how this impacts their lives. But in the meantime here are some highlights of what has been put forward so far.

  • Operating budget: $2.3 billion (0.1 percent increase from fiscal year 2012)
  • Capital budget: $766 million
  • Currently, the city is rotating closures between firehouses. Under the mayor’s plan, three of those closures would become permanent. It is unknown what firehouses will be closed. Fire Chief Jim Clack is expected to announce that decision prior to the budget being presented to the Board of Estimates in April.
  • The proposed budget also includes $3.8 million for property tax cuts in fiscal year 2013. 
  • The Bureau of Solid Waste will take over trash collection in city parks.
  • The city intends to make a $2 million investment in completing the city high-speed broadband network.
  • The proposed budget calls for consolidating the city’s 911 and 311 centers under the Mayor’s Office of Information Technology. Andrew Kleine, Baltimore’s Budget director, said that some of the uniformed staff currently at the 911 center could be moved to patrol.
  • The budget contains a plan approved by the Baltimore City Council to close eight recreation centers. None of those centers are located in North Baltimore.
  • The fiscal year 2013 budget is the fifth straight where the city has had to contend with revenue shortfalls. The city is trying to eliminate a predicted $48 million in the coming fiscal year.

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AnnKangarouse March 21, 2012 at 04:27 PM
I still just don't get it. SRB turns away the opportunity to receive millions of dollars in taxes and revenue for the city (with regard to developers) as if the city doesn't need the money?!?!?!?!?! But then pulls the wool over our eyes continually and continues to attack those who protect and serve?? What the heck is wrong with her???
ralahinn1 March 21, 2012 at 06:58 PM
Instead of using the " bottle tax" just on schools,and the "alcohol tax" on who knows what, why not use it for fire and police too, I would buy more bottled drinks and alcohol in the city , instead of powdered drinks and going to the county for my needs. There is a lot of new tax money flowing into the city and Maryland. Where is it going? There should be some kind of investigation.
AnnKangarouse March 21, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Exactly! Just imagine how much more $$$ there would be for these services we rely on if all of that tax money were properly accounted for and went to it's intended destination. BOE approves HUGE amounts of money each week for all sorts of things. The most glaring was a few months ago. Nearly a million bucks was passed along simply to cover an "accounting error". Most citizens are none the wiser...
AnnKangarouse March 21, 2012 at 07:42 PM
Adam, do you think there will EVER be an investigation (by authorities outside of Bmore) that would have the tenacity to look into the questionable spending habits of the BOE?
Adam Bednar (Editor) March 21, 2012 at 09:05 PM
I'm not sure what the thresh hold would be to trigger such an investigation.
Baltimore Slumlord Watch March 21, 2012 at 09:11 PM
There are actually a few inquiries into how HABC is spending HUD money...so it shouldn't be too difficult to find more "oopsies" in other Federal allocations.
AnnKangarouse March 21, 2012 at 09:42 PM
Forvige my bluntness please, but... they have a horrible record already. Why is the city spending SO much and so frivilously but crying poor mouth all the time? How about the Brew story that went out yesterday about the finds set aside for one program but diverted to another organization. Someone just happened to see the on a recent BOE agenda and started making calls. I'm still FLABBERGASTED that the BOE passed along aprox $677k b/c someone make an 'accounting error' ?!?! (I think this was a story Patch reported on when it happened recently. How does the process work? Why is the public not informed? Where IS the money going? What do you think it would take??? (I mean what MORE would it take) before those in higher authority than our local officials (who should be investigated) would finally begin taking action?
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 12:43 AM
http://www.baltimorebrew.com/2012/03/20/how-the-city-almost-gave-money-meant-for-westport-to-a-living-classrooms-project-in-fells-point/
Sean Tully March 22, 2012 at 03:08 AM
As predicted, Mayor Rawlings-Blake is managing the city's decline splendidly. I am guessing she'll miss her 10,000 new families in a decade goal by a mile.
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Why oh why oh why oh why, etc. are our elected officials and various other folks being audited??? Let's please expose how the money is really being spent and just how it gets shifted around so that the rest of us can stop being shafted.
AnnKangarouse March 28, 2012 at 02:26 PM
I read something over the weekend on the BOE's agenda that I'm tryng to understand. There's a property on N. Howard St that's set to be demolished. (It may be the old Grehound station) In the agenda it states that the business owners located at 612 1/2 Howard St are offering the use of their space to store the demo equipment. The name of the business is Senator Bar. ( google search for senator bar howard st baltimore) They sell beer wine and liquor, etc. Several names are listed as project mgr, etc. The e-mail addresses to contact these folks go directly to barbara mikulski. Also, another search for this business makes it look as though there isn't actually a business at that location. Just seems odd to me. Can you help??
AnnKangarouse March 28, 2012 at 02:27 PM
Opps. I meant to ask why these folks AREN'T audited!! Take a moment to do a search for the BOE agendas. It's a REAL eyeopener for sure!!
Able Baker April 13, 2012 at 02:49 PM
If you're driving to the County to "save" money on single bottles of soda, I don't know what to tell you. There isn't a lot of new tax money. There is, in fact, a lot less tax money flowing into the city because property values have plummetted.
Able Baker April 13, 2012 at 03:00 PM
I can help. You're a crazy person who doesn't know how to use a computer. Google Street View would show you that it's an abandoned rowhouse, and further googling would show you that it's being developed by a local company with a couple other properties in the area.
AnnKangarouse April 13, 2012 at 03:29 PM
@Able Baker- You talking to me??????
AnnKangarouse April 13, 2012 at 04:10 PM
Oh! Nevermind! I see "Able" Baker that you're not someone really that important and have a tendency to be somewhat abusive and disrespectful to others commenting on this site.

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